(The Center Square) – Now that the Illinois Supreme Court has ruled that cash bail can be abolished, a bail expert is warning of the consequences.

The 5-2 ruling by the state’s highest court overturned a December ruling by a Kankakee County judge that determined a new state law ending cash bail, known as the SAFE-T Act, was unconstitutional. On Sept. 18, Illinois will become the first state to abolish cash bail as a means of pretrial release.

“It is important that every county, big and small, city, suburban and rural, sees this fully and properly implemented,” said state Sen. Robert Peters, D-Chicago, after the court’s ruling.

The Coalition to End Money Bond is holding training sessions for people to learn how to watch pretrial hearings and monitor the implementation of the Pretrial Fairness Act.

Jeffrey Clayton, executive director of the American Bail Coalition, said prosecutors, judges and public defenders haven’t received funding to hold the hearings, so he sees complications.

“How’s that going to happen? Are prosecutors just going to file motions to detain in all eligible cases and let the chips fall where they may or are they going to have to pick and choose?” said Clayton to The Center Square. “Are they going to have the resources to file in all the cases they feel are eligible or not, so yes, I think there’s major implementation questions.”

There are concerns that Illinois’ new system of release and very limited detention without bail will embolden hardened recidivist criminals, as seen in New York state. While New Jersey eliminated monetary bail in 2017, it changed its constitution and spent nearly a billion dollars for prosecutors to perform detention hearings and to create a statewide system of pretrial criminal supervision, including GPS monitoring and house arrest. However, the plan for Illinois is to release criminal defendants, notwithstanding the criminal charges which first led to their arrest.

“So the question now is what is the detention list, and I’ve been able to obtain a copy from the prosecutors and I can tell you that there are going to be some really serious offenders who are not going to be going to jail,” said Clayton.

State Sen. John Curran, R-Lemont, has called for a special session of the legislature to make tweaks to the law, particularly in hopes of giving judges more leeway to hold violent offenders.

Originally published by The Center Square. Republished with permission.

For more Rights, Justice, and Culture News.

For more Budget & Tax News.